Blogs on Primary (K-2)

Blogs on Primary (K-2)RSS
Carolina NugentAugust 2, 2012

These last few weeks I have read some enlightening blogs and articles about game design, motivation and praise in children's apps. As the education director at KinderTown, I have looked at a tremendous number of apps that use stars, stickers and praise as the method of keeping kids engaged and active on the app. In contrast, as a teacher, I see more value in educational apps modeling lesson design, content and activities that are engaging with leveling for decreased frustration. The challenge for me has been to find apps and games which develop any kind of intrinsic (internal) motivation.

Read More
Betsy WeigleJuly 18, 2012

Poverty is a huge factor affecting the performance of our elementary students. Schools, districts and states with a high percentage of low-income families can reasonably cite poverty as one explanation for lower test scores or poor performance in other measures of student achievement.

My concern, however, is always for the individual children in my classroom. At that level, should poverty be any excuse for poor student performance?

Read More
Dr. Richard CurwinJuly 1, 2012

Have you ever noticed that the worst behaving children are never absent? I was tempted many times, when teaching seventh grade, to breath on certain students when I was sick. I wondered if the reason that these students never missed school was because their parents didn't want them at home. Of course, it was never that simple. Some parents worked and had no one to watch their children. Other students lived in dangerous home environments, and school was safer than staying home. Regardless of the reason, I wonder how many children feel unwanted wherever they are; home, school, the corner store, with their peers or on the streets.

Read More
Mary Beth HertzJune 4, 2012

Back in October, I wrote a post about Teaching Digital Citizenship in the Elementary Classroom. As it is Internet Safety Month, I want to share a sample lesson for teaching Internet Safety to students as young as kindergarten. Yes, you read correctly . . . kindergarten.

Read More
Elena AguilarJune 1, 2012

Where there is no vision, the people perish.

Does your school have a mission or a vision? Does it mean something and inform decision-making? Or is it just something posted on some wall/paper/handbook that you vaguely remember? Do you have a vision for yourself as a teacher, principal, coach, etc.? What do you feel is your mission?

Read More
Nicholas ProvenzanoMay 31, 2012

I often get emails from teachers looking for the perfect tool for their class. I love that teachers are excited to find new tools and integrate them into their lesson plans. As someone who has experience with different tools, I'm a logical person to ask for help when looking for something new. I have a dirty little secret, though.

Read More
Danielle Moss LeeMay 17, 2012

As we glide through the month of May, I know that many teachers and students are steadily dreaming of how to spend their summer vacations. Some will be off to sleep-away camp, some will travel to faraway places, and many others are still trying to figure it out. But for many families, the summer will also bring a level of anxiety. In the age of budget cuts, the opportunities for quality programs and government subsidized summer jobs will be few and far between. According to the National Summer Learning Association, many low-income and underserved students will face two to three months' summer learning loss in reading and math, while affluent and better resourced students may show slight gains in reading over the summer because of their access to summer enrichment.

What does this mean?

Read More
Larry FerlazzoMay 16, 2012

Students and teacher need to develop positive and trusting relationships in an effective classroom. It is also critical that all students, especially English-language learners, develop trusting and enriching relationships with each other. There are many activities which can be used for both introductory purposes and throughout the year to build and maintain positive relationships in the classroom. Some activities which work well to introduce students to each other and to the teacher can be used again at later points in the year as students' interests change and as they gain new life experiences. While this is certainly not an exhaustive list, it contains several suggestions we have found successful and which could easily be adapted for use with different levels of students.

Read More
Maurice EliasMay 14, 2012

In 2012, Kansas became the first state to create and adopt a set of social, emotional, and character development (SECD) standards. These standards have been aligned with the Kansas Common Core Curriculum Standards, College and Career Readiness, 21st century skills, and other state and federal mandates.

Read More
Marisa KaplanMay 10, 2012

What does CTT stand for? Some people think it's "creative thinkers thinking," or "cool teachers teaching." Others say it's "conflict tackling together." While CTT means all of the above, it stands for "collaborative team teaching" and refers to the idea of a co-teaching partnership.

Read More